Today’s long run was T.O.U.G.H. I know that it’s about 95% mental, at least for me. But, wow. I nearly gave up at mile 9. The advanced group had 10 miles on our slate today, so we took a bit of a different route to get our mileage in without having to do 3 loops of the park. Thank goodness. I don’t care much for loops, and if I have to do repeated loops, well… let’s just say I try to avoid that at all costs.
The first half of the run took us through an area with a view of a canyon. Don’t ask me the name–I can’t remember the signs I saw. It was beautiful, but there were a few steep hills out there. I may have moaned a few times. On our way back toward the park, we passed some fellow Team ASPCA members on the bike path.
At mile 5, we stopped to grab some water and fuel. I tried the Blueberry Crisp Clif Bar today. Meh. I wasn’t that impressed. I knew I wanted something that would be easy to eat in small bites and leave the rest behind for later. I didn’t feel much energy from the bar, but I only ate about a third of it. I also don’t use Gu gels. I think they taste awful and leave your mouth feeling dry, which is the last thing I want. Honestly, I’d rather not take anything for energy during a race. I know some people would disagree with that, but it works for me to just down some good old water and move on.
The second half of the run was nice, and we did a 2.5 mile out and back route on the Santa Ana River Trail. I like this trail, and the bike path is nice, too. The only issue with the bike path is that some of the cyclists are not that runner friendly. Even though we stick to our side of the road, they think they own the path. I could give you details, but you’d probably find it boring. Anyways, some are nice about sharing the path, others not so much.
After the turn-around at 7.5 miles, I still felt pretty good… tired, but good. But boy, when I hit 9 miles, I was really starting to feel it. I was so ready to give up. And usually I don’t feel that way, so I was pretty upset about that. I knew I could do 10 miles, and probably more, but my mind was saying otherwise. And I did do it… painfully for the last half mile and another .3 miles to reach the park again. But man, it was not easy. I know it shouldn’t be. It is a long run for a reason and these runs just make us stronger for race day, but I’m wishing I hadn’t let my mind take over like that. I was sweating so much, I even had sweat in my eyes. At least it’s done and I did finish! 😉 With almost 2 months until race day, I feel ok with that and where I am. I’d like to break my 1:50 PR for this race, so we’ll see! Either way, the most important thing is that we’re running this race for prevention of animal cruelty. And if I haven’t harassed you enough, please donate! There’s still time! xo